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Hardball With Chris Matthews

News/Business. (2010) (CC)

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00:59:59

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mpeg2video

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mp2

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720

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Kentucky 14, Us 11, Roger 9, Bill Clinton 8, Obama 7, Pennsylvania 5, Jack Conway 5, Clinton 4, Msnbc 4, Josh Marshall 3, Glenn Beck 3, Joe Biden 3, Barack Obama 3, Belfast 3, Nevada 3, Joe Sestak 3, New Hampshire 3, United States 3, P.j. O'rourke 3, Howard Fineman 2,
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  MSNBC    Hardball With Chris Matthews    News/Business.  (2010)  (CC)  

    September 29, 2010
    2:00 - 3:00am EDT  

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buck up. good evening. i'm chris matthews in belfast. i'll be traveling this week with former president clinton who arrives in derry tomorrow. let's play "hardball." cheering section, both president obama and vice president biden are telling the democratic base to stop complaining and get out there and vote. mr. obama said in a "rolling stone" interview it's inexcusable to sit out voting this november. will this get out the vote? our latest nbc news/"wall street journal" poll has some hints that the democrats may be closing the enthusiasm gap. one democrat who seems to be
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gaining ground is yak conway, who is running for senate against tea party errand paul. he's with us tonight. and we have p.j. o'rourke, a good name to have when you're broadcasting from the emerald island. his book is called "don't vote." is he cheering against the democrats? finally let me finish with a need to get in the car and drive. all that's ahead, but first let's check the "hardball" scoreboards. the latest polls in the tight races around the country. we'll start with the connecticut senate race, where dick blumenthal leads linda mcmahon by just three points. joe sestak is now within five points of toomey. in missouri, a poll by has robin carnahan within striking distance of republican roy blunt. but in new hampshire it's republican ayotte with a 14-point lead over democrat hodes. we'll continue to check the hardball scoreboard each night. joining me is josh marshall, founder and editor of "talking
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points memo" and joan walsh of salon. let me start with you, josh. this new appeal by the president, the vice president, speaking of talking points, they seem to have them. buck up. >> you know, they're in a tough position. they have to get their base out. frankly myself, i think they're right. if the people -- every democrat who supports those positions, those people need to show up. the problem is that the white house keeps coming into this with -- a lot of this comes down to tone. it's really tough for them to get the message out about without seeming dismissive or condescending. they've got their work cut out for them. they already have this track record, where a month ago robert gibbs said this thing about the professional left and this stuff, so they dealt themselves into a bit of a bad position, but they have to do this. i think even though these comments will get people riled up and upset they have to do it, and i think to some extent it will work.
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>> let's take a look at what the vice president said along these lines. let's listen to joe biden. >> there some on the democratic base, not the core of it, that are angry because we didn't get every single thing they want. those that didn't get everything they wanted, it's time to buck up here, understand that we can make things better, continue to move forward, but not yield the playing field to those folks who are against everything that we stand for in terms of the initiatives we put forward. >> i guess the question is tone that's been raised by josh. what do you make of it? is it a question of tone or message? >> i think it's a bit of both. this is hard for me. i feel like i'm in the middle a family feud. i love joe biden, but it's like uncle joe is telling me to stop whining. that never works. have you ever told your kids to stop whining? it's not effective. the base is feeling scapegoated.
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i don't understand -- we don't see the republicans saying to the tea party stop whining, you didn't get everything you want, but we're better than the other side. it's a crazymaking message. i actually disagree with josh, i don't think it will work. with the vast majority of the progressive base vote? of course we will. we always vote, but beating up on us, you know, just makes no sense to me. >> this is what i don't get, what do you mean by scapegoating? do you mean setting up a blame game situation assuming you're going to get beaten? >> i worry about that a bit. i'm not saying it flat-out. does it cross my mind? sure. because i can't think of any other reason to do this, chris. i don't know why you beat up your base. i don't know why you think a way to motivate people is to tell them they're wrong, ungrateful, irresponsible. so when my mind can't find a good political reason. i go to psychological reasons, future political reasons, maybe
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that's it or maybe they're just angry and need to get it in check. >> i think the last one is probably true. human nature may be just ticked off at the left progressive left. let's look at the way the president is using the language. quote, in a new "rolling stone" interview, the president said -- quote the idea that we've got a lack of enthusiasm in the base is just irresponsible. democratic people need to shake off this lethargy. people need to buck up. there's the phrase, josh. i don't know. i would imagine it's a combination of joan says they're angry that the left has been hitting them hard, and they're trying to get them guilt ridden enough to go out and vote. that's going to be such a catastrophe, i don't think you can blame it on a small percentage of voters, which is the progressive left. >> i don't think they're setting anybody up for blame. i think the issue is that the white house needs to have a gut check moment with every
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potential voter, and tell people, look, this is -- this is hardball, we're in a real fight here, and even though people are disappointed, we need everybody to come and turn out. i think that's a message they have to send, that's a message they should send. at the same time, the white house is a pressure cooker right now, and i'm sure they feel embattled. i think they do feel angry. i think what they're feeling is we wish these people would stop whining. why is everybody complaining about what we are doing? these are the people who are supposed to support us, blah, blah, blah. so they have a message that they could send, but to some extent their own feelings, emotions, which are bubbling over in that pressure cooker are kind of coming through. there's a little more candor than might be wise for them. that's why it's coming out this way, you're ending up with these
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-- these quotes that i -- i think even democrats who really think they're right in some way kind of cringe to hear just because, again, the tone is not right. >> you know, joan, let's talk turkey here. the president is extremely transactional, we know. the president is not warm and fuzzy about relationship politician. he's not a clinton, for example. his idea is you vote for me, i'll do things for you. right? transactional. should he be upset with people who feel he didn't meet the transaction is it >> i think you're right about the emotion, but emotion is a luxury you can't afford at this point, and i don't think -- i'm very unhappy, for example, with this slogan, you know, the last election was about changing the guard and this one is about guarding the change. that also says to people, hey, we did the change, it's done, you should be happy, and we all
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know the president, first of all, the change is not done. so there's a lot of messaging mistakes going on here, and i think it's silly to be angry at voters, you've just got to reason and tell them why you're better than the other guys. >> i think part of this is -- >> josh, hold on a second. i want you to finish with this thought. a big thought. here you are president of the united states with a center-left coalition, with some high thinking i think republicans voted for you, because they wanted to vote for you as a person. they're probably gone, that group. you have a center left you have to work through and get programs through in congress, a congress where it takes 60 votes to get anything done, so you need a strong, in fact, a super majority, which is almost impossible. how do you promote, prosecute a progressive agenda, win reelection, hold the midterms and do it all, keep your far left happy, keep your middle right happy, to the extend you need it. how do you do all that and be a leader and keep everybody happy? you tell me, josh.
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>> i think what it comes down to, joan was just saying this emotion is a luxury the white house can't afford. the white house is saying to the core supporters, this disappointment, this sense of acting out, we can't afford that. what it shows is that when a political party is on the ropes, everybody's emotions are running high. no one can afford it, but everyone is doing it. i think it's a time when a leader, the president of the united states need to step in and exercise that kind of leadership to get it away from a blame game and get it to pulling everybody together, the democrats frankly can't afford on either side right now to be indulging their feelings on disappointment either way. >> chris, i don't have an answer. i don't think you can keep everybody happy. we both know that's impossible. the hope for this president and the hope for the democratic party is that these reforms that they have put in place, health care and reform especially, as well as the stimulus, those three things really would make life better in a palpable way.
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frankly they haven't yet. they haven't for lots of reasons, but one of them may be they were too much of a compromise which they needed to do to get the votes. you need democrats who make a difference for their constituency. that's the only way to get reelected. that's the only way to have a long-term democratic majority. that's what democrats are worried about. were those two things too compromised, on wellpoint is saying we're not going to cover kids? we've compromised too many. that's an ideological question, a very practical, political question. if you give away the game to the corporations and then do not produce change, your base and the rest of the country will be angry for the right reasons. >> the corporations here's my the corporations don't think he's given them anything. here's my views. both of you have said i respect those views from everybody, anybody who's passionate about politics i believe in. i know this. this president has done what we were all taught in graduate school to do, what progressives
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have believed in from years and years, decades ago. one, you deal with an economic downfall with keynesian economics. you compensate for the loss of consumer spending. that's what you do. that's what you're supposed to do. no one has had a better idea than the 1930s. number two. the wall street crowd needed governing. they didn't have any. now they've got some. number three, he's pushed for progressive taxation, he's going after the rich. he's not giving them their tax cut. he's put people like eric holder in justice. he has done what a progressive should have tried to do. we can argue about tone and degree of successful politics and personality, but i don't know how a liberal or progressive can turn their back on this guy and say they've got something better waiting in the closet. i don't know who that person is. >> i couldn't agree with you more, chris. >> and nobody talking does. there ant nobody out there but this guy, and certainly nobody more progressive who can win election for sheriff. thank you, josh marshall -- maybe i'm getting mad.
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josh marshall and joan walsh. coming up, the latest poll shows that signs that democrats may be closing that enthusiasm gap despite this talk. the numbers are next. you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc. you go next if you had a hoveround power chair? the statue of liberty? the grand canyon? it's all possible with a hoveround. tom: hi i'm tom kruse, inventor and founder of hoveround. when we say you're free to see the world, we mean it. call today and get a free hoveround information kit that includes a video and full color brochure. dennis celorie: "it's by far the best chair i've ever owned." terri: "last year, 9 out of 10 people got their hoveround for little or no money." jim plunkitt: "no cost. absolutely no cost to me." breaking news...when you call today, we'll include a free hoveround collapsible grabber with the purchase of your power chair. it reaches, it grabs, it's collapsible and it's portable.
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>> we have to keep fighting for these changes. they don't come by themselves. i hope everybody will, you know, pay attention and do their homework, and find out about candidates. these choices will mean something. you have to ask yourself what direction do i want this country
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to go? do i want to invest in our people, in our middle class, and making it stronger, and clean energy? is that one vision? or will we keep on doing the same things that got us -- welcome back to "hardball" that was president obama in albuquerque today. i'm joined by howard fineman, and politico columnist roger simon. i want to keep up with you, rog. keep up with you, hour. let's look at these polling data here. this is what we call a generic poll, guys, which is how people will vote partywise. here it is. party prison, republicans lead only three points. they were up nine points as recently as august. it's down. these are likely voters, by the way. this is a very good poll for democrats. 37%, people are positive towards democrats right now, and that's higher than the support for either republicans or tea
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partiers. what do you make of that? i want to start with howard on that one. this sense of closure coming in, where democrats are getting much better off relative to where they were. >> i don't think it's a sense of closure, chris, i think it's a sense of opening up and more attention being paid for republican candidates. a month or two still lifetime in politics, and what happened is in places like pennsylvania, where i was yesterday, pat toomey, the republican nominee, very strong with the base and the republican party, but very conservative on fiscal matters. the question is whether that's pennsylvania or not. rick santorum was a republican senator from pennsylvania, but he's very conservative, but stressed cultural issues. which play in pennsylvania. toomey, on the other hand, is a club for growth, small government conservative, cut taxes, cut government, questioning social security, social programs and medicare and medicaid. that's really not pennsylvania, which likes its government for the most part.
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what joe sestak is doing to close the race there is less important than the fact that people are focusing on toomey who is toomey, exactly? what is he saying about social security? what is he saying about roads? what is he saying about things, frankly the thing that pennsylvanians like? because it's a big, industrial, generally moderate state. i think that's what's happening in place after place, the focus on the republican conservatives is what's bringing the democrats back. >> roger we'll have jack conway from kentucky in a minute. the same thing is happening there, the questions about the views toward drug legality on behalf of rand paul, supporters with racist backgrounds giving him money, those questions are getting asked right now in the closing stretch. >> and howard's point is a good one. every year we say all politics is local until we get to the mid terms and say, no, it's national it's about whether we like the president or not. in fact, it is a lot about local races, individual candidates,
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candidates with skeletons in their closet that we never knew about before, or candidates who don't really bond well with people, or candidates who just have positions that people don't like. that's the good part for the democrats. individual races where democrats might do better than republicans. the bad news is when you look at your poll, and you look at the parties that people have good feelings about, and you add the republicans to the tea party, you get 61% of the nation who don't like democrats. that's still a mountain for the democrats to climb, and it's a big mountain. even though they have closed on the generic ballot, they're still trying to convince people, persuade people that they should be rewarded that they have done something good for the country and credible, and they ought to get another two years or six years. speaking of president obama, he has to deal with the problem
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with people spreading the rumor he's not the religion he says he is. here he is in albuquerque talking about his christian faith. >> mother teresa answered it in an article, and i was going to ask you the same, because i loved her answer. the first one is, why are you a christian? >> i'm a christian by choice. my family didn't, frankly, they weren't folks who went to church every week. i mean, my mother was one of the most spiritual people i knew, but she didn't raise me in the church. so i came to my christian faith later in life. and it was because the preseptembers of jesus christ spoke to me in terms of the kind of life i would want to lead. >> howard, i completely
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understand that thinking, because i was raised in one religion, roman catholicism, i was lucky to have it handed to me basically by my parents, but he talks about being raised in an atheist family, basically, for all practical purposes and trying to find his religious faith. i would hate to have this called a headline. we've known this for a long time and now he's forced to come out with it, and i think some adver sear media will say he's saying some new things. >> i don't think there's anything new particularly, chris, if you've read his autobiography or know anything about him, you basically knew that, but sure people take pot shots. they'll say this raises more questions than it answers. you know, who were his parents, what did they believe or not? and you know, when he says he accepted christianity, became a christian, he talks about it in a way that frankly is not the way that born-agains talk about it. he doesn't have to talk about it that way.
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lord knows he doesn't, but if he's somehow trying to reach or explain himself to the bible belt, and i don't know that he is, that's not going to do it because that's not the way they talk about it. maybe it doesn't matter, we'll see. >> let me take a potshot about this. i mean, did he have to throw his family under the bus to make this point? i mean, you know, his family didn't go to church, but he went to church? to me this is the worst thing he's done since comparing his grandmother to reverend wright. to make a point about --. >> you're wrong. >> this disturbs me. how far do we go in politics to get a few extra votes? he's christian, fine -- >> i don't agree with that. >> i don't agree with that at all. because i know his background, his mother was kind of a hippy. she was a free thinker. she wasn't a church-goer. that's all he's saying. he wasn't saying his mother was
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spiritual. let's go to bill clinton. he knew how to handle the bible belt. according to this new poll, he was liked by more than half the voters overall, very good numbers relatively, and he cleans up among independents. overwhelming numbers among independents. your thoughts, and then roger. >> i think that's absolutely startling. what's amazing is how it contrasts with barack obama's numbers among independents. roger was talking about the overall shape of this election, roger is absolutely right. the reason why he's right is because of independents abandoning barack obama in droves. it's like they have a residual feeling for the democratic party, but right now it's not for obama, so they transferred it back to bill clinton. clinton -- in a way bill clinton is leader -- it's he's still the leader of democratic party, and barack obama who got elected as an outsider is once again an
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outsider in his own party. >> well said. roger? >> i agree with that except one small point. one reason bill clinton is doing so well now is that he's not view as a political figure anymore. he's viewed as a philanthropist, a man who's raising hundreds of millions to, you know, cure aids, to solve environmental problems, things that are not especially political. sure he's going to go on the trail for barack obama, but i might -- i think once he does, he might see those figures shift a little. >> i hate to disagree with roger -- boy, we are really disagreeing a lot, but i haven't seen the poll numbers on that. i can't imagine that there's anybody in the united states who doesn't still regard bill clinton as a political figure. he oozes politics out of every pore. that's what made him infuriating, but also what makes him charming, and able to explain in kitchen table
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language what barack obama can't always seem to do. it's a fascinating thing. it's a mixeded blessing for obama. >> we're going to tag team roger. roger, why, if he's not seen as a politician is there such a differential between the vote he's getting on the poll, overwhelming support, and 20% he's getting from republicans, that's a political differential. why is he so popular, as opposed to republicans if he's not seen as a political figure. >> independents are more likely to see him as nonpolitical, and they like nonpolitical figures and they change their minds more than people who are republicans always and democrats always. these are people used to viewing people differently. i've got to say i saw bill clinton on david letterman not long ago. bill clinton said he had just been in nevada campaigning for a candidate, didn't say harry reid, didn't say a democrat, he
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went out of his way just to be this neutral figure, making a point about solar energy and wind in. that's why he brought up nevada. this is a guy who has left to a large degree politics behind him even though those of us in the business will always see him that way. >> does that mean you believe that hillary clinton doesn't harbor ambitions down the road? if you think she does, then you would think he does. >> i would think hillary clinton would love to be president of the united states. if you take a look at what bill clinton's advice to barack obama actually was, a lot of it was payback for the last election. it's not very kind stuff. it's embrace people's anger for you, just embrace it and admit it, and then go on from there. well, this is a guy who didn't embrace people's anger until he had to take a blood test and we produced, you know, a little
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blue dress, and barack obama doesn't see that he did anything wrong, and needs to apologize for it. he doesn't seem himself as guilt-ridden. he seems himself as a guy who has done the best he could for two years and now is getting out there trying to tell his story. >> i'm with you on that one, roger. i love this fisticuffs. >> then a genteel fisticuffs. >> i love howard. >> likewise, roger. >> howard fineman soon to be at the huffington post, but i always thinking of himself to some extent as a "newsweek" guy. thank you roger simon, thank you howard fineman. up next sarah palin wants to be taken seriously, but "dancing with the stars" appearance too much in the limelight? stick around. you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc. hi, folks. hi. we're ready to switch our car insurance to progressive. today just seemed like a great day to save. oh, it's not just today.
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back to "hardball." now to "the sideshow." self-proclaimed mama grizzly was on front row with "dancing with the stars" to support her daughter bristol. take a listen. >> sarah, great to have you here. >> thank you. >> i know you're usually very bashful about giving your opinions about things, but how do you think the show is going? >> this is amazing, so exciting. great to see this courage and joy and exuberance. it's awesome. >> what do you think about those three? >> the judges are awesome. it's like before a hockey game you're not going to chew out the refs before your team is up. you guys are doing great. >> and your favorite dancer so far? >> oh, my goods in, they're all amazing. bristol is not up yet. but bristol the pistol. >> bristol her daughter finished in the top three. i wonder however whether all this celebrity television is helping to boost the seriousness with which we view her mother.
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next, jon stewart and bill o'reilly found common ground on the subject of glenn beck. interesting stuff here in the intramural department. they're they are on "the daily show." >> so i wanted to come on the glenn beck program with my book, and they wouldn't have us. >> they don't know who you are. >> i know, but we called over -- >> i told beck, have stewart. he's pretty funny once in a while. >> he said no-go. >> he doesn't know who you are. >> i would love a conversation. >> with glenn beck? >> i would love it. >> nobody can. >> we could do an hour. >> he's in a sealed room. >> no, is that true? >> nobody can talk to him. >> is he the bubble boy of fox news? >> he does the radio, goes back in the sealed room, on tv, and then he goes back. you can't see him. it's like el have i and howard hughes, you can't. >> o'reilly declined an invitation to attend a rally next week. he said he would like to see colbert and stewart stand on their own four feet? does that mean they each have four feet or they're four-legged animals? can't tell here.
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now to tonight's big number. congressional lawmakers are in a rush to finish government business before next friday, and in a rush to race as much cash as possible. how many fund-raisers will be held? politico tells us 400. a mad crash for cash. 400 fund-raisers in two weekses. tonight's nice to know who's paying for all this big number. up next, the democrat running again tea party favorite rand paul in kentucky, jack conway is making a strong close in kentucky. he's coming here in a minute. you're watching "hardball." we're in belfast, northern ireland, where i'm traveling with former president bill clinton. back after this.
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the president also spoke by phone tonight with former president jimmy carter. the 85-year-old was hospitalized this afternoon after complaining about an upset stomach. a federal appeals courts is allow federally funded stem cell research to proceed while a larger lawsuit is pending. a 19-year-old sophomore opened fire with an ak-47 on the university of texas campus. he fired several shots without hitting anyone before turning the gun on himself. an eighth victim has died as a result of the gas explosion in san bruno. she's back in rehab for the fifth time.
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now back to "hardball." welcome back. the latest kentucky poll shows a tight senate rate between tea party errand paul and jack conway. the new survey/usa policy, it's a rob on poll, but we're joined by the man himself, jack conway thank you for joining us. i have a couple points. you've been hitting this guy in a couple ways that i think are serious business. is he getting money from racists? and should he send it back? >> well, good evening to you, chris. we called on him a few days ago to return contributions he received from white separatists. it's just too painful an issue for you not to return the
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contributions, and if you're in public life, you ought to look at those who are contributing to you. everyone seems to remember the 20 painful minutes he had on this network where he rejected fundamental parts of the constitution. provisions of the civil rights act. i think it's on rand paul to make sure he would return contributions for people who have associations with white separatists organization. >> does he have a personal problem? >> i don't know. it just seems to me -- >> you're running against him. let me judge -- you have to judge him. do you think he has a problem or not? you're running on this issue. is it an issue about his perch are personal character? >> i think it's an issue he doesn't get kentucky. he doesn't get our values. if you take money from white separatists, that's not acceptable. he seems to have a world view that government should never touch business in any way whatsoever. as attorney general, i'm all about accountable. i think we need more, not let.
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so i think rand paul has to be accountable, and i don't think it does us any good in the commonwealth of kentucky to have a candidate like rand paul that takes this money and also says he's against the americans with disabilities act and other issues like that. >> would you you have a bad conscience if you took money from racists? >> yes. >> well, why doesn't he? i'm asking you to ask him. should he have a bad conscientious? >> yes, he should. >> so it's a character issue. let me ask about this drug issue. i know he's a libertarian, and all of us have talked about this since we grew up. should there be certain drugs we don't consider contribute violations? we don't use the full force of the law against people. some people have this view about marijuana use. what is his position, as you understand it? apparently he has a somewhat libertarian view on that subject, which you think are arguing is not a kentucky view. >> exactly. he seems to think that all drug issues should be up to a state level. it's up to the states to decide what they criminalize or don't, but in kentucky we have a
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peculiar problem with prescription bills being used for off-label purposes. it's an epidemic with oxycontin and hydrocodone and other drugs in eastern kentucky. hal roberts, a republican, has brought in a lot of money to try to combat the issue, but rand paul has said he doesn't want any federal report for treatment or interdiction. it's not about being tough on drugs. as attorney general, i think we should treat criminals about criminals, but it's about being smart on it. this isn't an issue that kentucky can tackle alone. your attorney general. should people be arrested for smoking marijuana? in kentucky? >> i think so. absolutely. it's against the law. >> should they be put in prison? >> well, i know, a first-time offense and small amount, i think we can incarcerate people for more serious offenses. i mean, first time nonviolent drug offenses, i think we have to look at treatment and other options. we can't incarcerate our way out of this problem, but as attorney general, i will enforce the drug laws.
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>> let me ask about this election. it seems like you have a real shot in the next month. i want you to talk to voters out there. we've had a big fight, i hear it all over my network where people on the progressive left activists, who pay attention to programs like this, they may be a small minority, but they make a lot of noise. my question to you is, should they be angry at president obama or should they be thrilled that they're lucky to live in in a time where we have a progressive president? most americans can hardly remember a progressive president? i'm serious, who was the last progressive president? >> on some things bill clinton was progressive, on others he was moderate, others he was conservative. so i kind of eschew labels. >> with this president, i think he's seen as a progressive. so why are they mad at him? >> i don't know. i think they expected too much too early. obviously this president is trying to deliver on a number of key initiatives. obviously governing is tougher sometimes than campaigning, but what's happening in kentucky, is
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we're surging, because we're putting kentucky first and talking about issues that are important to kentuckyians. the rationale for rand paul's candidacy is falling apart. chris, i've taken a whole lot of he's talk about term limits, but haven't applied it to himself. chris, i'm taken a who the lot of hits from calf rove, and all these -- he's after me, and i hope some of your viewers go to conway fight fund to help us out. but he's calling for a deductible for every recipient of medicare, so the rationale is beginning to collapse. >> do you think karl rove is a negative influence on american life? >> i do. as someone who's taking about a million of special interest dollars coming running adding in the commonwealth of kentucky, claiming that i have cut half a trillion. >> i've got a tough one for you. i don't know where you're going
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to stand on this. i got reports over the weekend that your senior senator mitch mcconnell has been personally holding up issuing subpoenas to the oil company, bp in particular, for its role in the bp disaster. mitch mcconnell does not believe in a serious investigation of bp. is he in the tank? i can't think of another reason why he doesn't want a serious investigation of an environmental catastrophe. >> i can't think of another reason, either. i believe in accountability. >> is he in the tank with the oil industry? >> well, it seems like he is. i'll tell you what. it seems like he's fighting, trying to push this past the elections and not allow bob graham and his committee, which has to report in july, not allowing them to have subpoena power. they ought to have subpoena power so they can make sure it doesn't happen again. >> that's one good reason for you to get elected right there. thank you, jack conway, who goes after the bad guys and knows the power of a subpoena. an putting people under the box and under oath so they can't squirm away from it again. i'm serious.
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>> well, thank you very much. >> the one and only p.j. o'roarke, his new book is call -- and i totally don't agree with it, "don't vote." we're from belfast, only on msnbc.
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charlie crist may be fading a bit in that race in florida, but his race got a boost. robert wexler calls himself a fire-breathing liberal, and endorsed crist. crist is behind marco rubio, but is hoping more big-named democrats will marginalize him and make him the democrat in the race. "hardball" will be right back.
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we're back. to give his take is p.j. o'rourke, who has a new book called "don't vote." it just encourages the bastards. i can say words like that when you're on, because i'm merely quoting your book. >> that's right. >> why are you hiding in new hampshire? a state that's so antigovernment that tip o'neil once told me, they don't even like parks up there. >> you just said it all. you explained it for me. you know, as a matter of fact, it was the conventional republicans that won the primaries up there, not the tea party candidates. so go figure. >> how did you vote, as a live free or die republican? >> i voted --
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>> with the establishment -- i voted the tea party candidate except for charlie bass, because he's my friend, my good friend and my neighbor, and i owe him neighbor and i owe him money. maybe he owes me money. i can't remember. >> you're the most sauderrist in the world. >> oh, chris, come on. >> come on. >> oh, yes. >> you're a populist, right? you're a progressive, you want people to progress -- go ahead. i'm sorry. >> take a look. here's one of your opponents, here's bill maher going after christine o'donnell. i want you to add the icing to this cake. >> i'd be glad to. >> and the question was something she said back in 1998 that's come back to haunt her. let's listen. >> you know what? evolution -- evolution is a myth. and even darwin himself --
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>> evolution is a myth? >> yeah, you know what -- >> have you ever looked at a monkey? >> well, then why aren't monkeys still evolving into humans? >> it takes a lot of time. >> i think that's the open question. why aren't monkeys still evolving in front of our face? she says if you're looking at a monkey and it's not turning into your little brother, then it obviously wasn't true. that's her point. >> i've got some -- i've got some problems with evolution myself. i mean, because i look around at say democrats and i say that's evolved? you know, i would say it's kind of going in the other direction. >> what about your friend sharron angle out in nevada who says she wants second amendment remedies. that's her phrase if you don't like congress voted last week. didn't lee harvey oswald have a second amendment remedy? >> second amendment remedy sounds like a sparanos euphemism there. but my attitude is let's elect
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some crazy people because, we've tried it with sane people and it really didn't work. and so, you know, what's the alternative? >> well, i want to know the alternative. because i like -- one night tony snowe and i laughed for three hours when you were doing parliament of horrors. i think it was a republican retreat i covered. >> it was. >> and it was great fun. but i want to ask you, you've gone up to new hampshire, that's where people go when they're tired of taxichussetts. is it possible to get away from the big city and complexities and go off and live in new hampshire. does it work? you're there. >> no, it doesn't work. you know, the irs guys comes after you. he finds you. you can't get so far off the grid that the irs can't track you down. so no, it really doesn't work. you know, the thing -- i would love to be apolitical. i've been involved with politics almost as long as you have, you
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know, and it occurred to me the other day that i'm having about as much fun as a grizzly bear getting a bikini wax. i hate politics. but you can't be apolitical. it's being like aparental. i'd love to say to the kids, here's my car keys, here's the bank card, and see you when you're 30. you can't be, tempting, though it is, at times. >> so you stand with the president and joe biden. get off your butt, buck up, go out and vote. >> i wouldn't go that far. and i'm also pretty interested in that's a gravitas move given the interview to "rolling stone" by the president. >> it worked for general mcchrystal, didn't it. >> yes. but the president's already lost the youth vote. taking the twinkies out of the lunch and putting carrots in and wanting to extend the school year, no kid's going to vote for him.
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>> p.j., take a look at stephen colbert on capitol hill. here he is, they invited him in. they think it's a comedy club now. here he is, steve colbert. >> we all know there was a long tradition of great nations imparting foreign workers to do their farm work. after all, it was the ancient israelites who built the pyramids. but this is america, i don't want a tomato picked by a mexican, i want it picked by an american, then sliced by a guatemalan. >> food for you to think about. p.j. o'rourke. your book is -- >> as if there weren't enough clowns in congress. >> p.j., thank you, buddy. when we return, let me finish with some thoughts about what president obama told "rolling stone" magazine. you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc.
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let me finish tonight with some hope for progressives. there's a decent chance this next month that democrats can snare victory from the teeth of disaster. never doubt that disaster looms. if the young voters have something better to do tuesday, november 2nd, the progressive activists become passive, if the democrats fail to embrace the independents, catastrophe looms. the senate and the house could both be lost. republicans could gain an iron grip on the congress, road
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blocking everything, killing the obama dream in its bed. so this is the open question. not will it be a tough election for democrats, but more to the heart of it. will it be the kind of crushing defeat that leads to a year of back biting, that leads to division, and ultimately to defeat? or will it be an election night outcome from which they can recover and ultimately rally? this is why the president is telling them to buck up. why his language is getting tougher. there are opportunities for success between now and november 2nd. the west coast is looking better for boxer and murray. conway is making a serious run in kentucky. blumenthal can win in connecticut if he offers true integrity over the glitz and grit that's been thrown against him. and joe sestak, the veteran navy admiral can close powerfully like he did in the primary.